Hibernation is definitely over. We have to get used to our on-going trip.
In Switzerland? No problem – just need to visit 1 of the prime tourist sights. We decide for Titlis. A mountain in central Switzerland. About 3000m high, a cable car bringing you up. And most important for tourists: not too far from the other prime tourist destinations Lucerne and Interlaken. And even more important: this place is mentioned in important Asian travel guide books.
So just a week before our departure we take the opportunity to become acclimatized to China.
On the top of Titlis a splendid view. Mount Everest cannot compete, even if nearly 6000m higher.
And it’s true – real opportunities to get used to our Asia trip. Even if we have to admit Mount Titlis is dominated by India. Just getting out of the cable car the 1st ad is tempting you to the Indian buffet on the 2nd floor.
Outside the building a considerable number of tourists from India making selfies in front of a Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge monument. A movie shot partly in Switzerland and consequently it became 1 of the most famous in India. Also a movie non bollywoodies maybe never have heard about – but as slushy and important as Gone with the Wind in other parts of the world.
Whatever, we need to get used to China, not to India. Finally we succeed. Not easy among all these Indians. At some distance of the irrevocable proof of bollywood’s capabilities we finally find a few tourists we suppose they’re from China. They take beautiful pics of each other with the Alps in the background. As a proof of this rare opportunity we quickly digitize them. Hopefully they’re not from Taiwan.
Then we have a look at the restaurant. Many Indian tourists. All munching greasy chicken’n’goat cheeseburgers, completely ignoring the Indian buffet with Dhal Bat dominated Chicken Masala Khorma style, Palak Paneer topped with a dip of Kamasutra and small bits of Naan in a garlic sauce.
After that unique experience back to Laufaburg. To pack our stuff for the next part of the journey. Now convinced to be well prepared for new adventures waiting for us.
Luang Prabang, 1st June
Well, on 27th we have to say goodbye to our favorite watering hole in Laufaburg. A last wheat beer with a view on River Rhine …
… and the next day we’re off. Of course with the obligatory stopover at this famous fast food chain at Zurich Airport. Just to make sure we’ll never complain about food during our trip.
And then we’re in the tube. 11h to Bangkok. On the way a nice sundowner with a great view on the dust of Turkmenistan’s desert. Later, near India’s proud capital Delhi, some impressive turbulences. Hopefully Thai Airways got an insurance for their kitchenware. Early morning in Bangkok, change Airports and many hours later we’re in Air Asia’s beautiful cabin. And finally, in the late afternoon we arrive in Luang Prabang.
As usual to our favourite place – Chitdara 2 in the old town straight above Mekong River. It seems in the meantime everybody definitely knows us. And on to 1 of these watering holes overlooking the river. To admire sunset.
The next day we need to wake up Prado from its hibernation. We find the car in perfect condition; well protected by a layer of dust. Thanx to the owner of the place and to Monica of Jumbo Guesthouse ( where? klick here ).
Then a wellness and rejuvenation program for Prado. Thanx to Alex of Chitdara we found a workshop able to fit all the parts we brought from Europe ( klick here ) and again we’re ready for the road.
Of course – only after a splurge in the Bamboo Garden – the very same place that converted us in January from absolute philistines to master cooks deserving their 1st Michelin star in the near future.
Luang Namtha, 4th June
We start to the north. We still have a few days left before entering China. So 1st to Nong Khiao. Of course, we already know it. Nevertheless, it’s a nicer place than Luang Namtha to spend a day or 2.